Puzzle Tubes, Leaves & Treats

By Jaime Wilson, Zoo Blog Keeper

A couple of weeks ago we started taking pictures of some of the animals with their new enrichment "toys" that generous donors purchased at our Wild Affair event. Check out round one on the post "Toys, Browse & Worms".

Round two was last week and included the Red kangaroos, Bengal monitor and Giraffes.

First stop: Australian Outback
The Red kangaroos share an exhibit with Emu and Bennett's wallaby. They all get produce first thing in the morning, but today the Red roos got their toy too! It was a large, thick plastic ball that has big holes drilled into it. Treats are dropped inside and the roos have to roll the ball around until something falls out.

Second stop: Reptile House
When we talk about enrichments for the animals, we all think of big cats, birds, hoof stock - those seem like the standard. Reptiles enrichments? Well, that seems harder. The Bengal monitor is a fairly large and active lizard that eats crickets, so she gets a puzzle tube! It is an acrylic tube with drilled holes and caps at both ends. It is filled with crickets so the more it is moved around, the more crickets find their way out. She spent a lot of time chasing down all those crickets.

Third Stop: Tall Wonders Giraffe Habitat
Acacia is one of the Giraffes favorite foods and they can eat a lot! The Zoo has Acacia trees on grounds that are used to feed Giraffes and many other animals. As part of the newly renovated exhibit, more trees were purchased to increase our supply of browse for the three girls. The branch below was stripped clean of leaves in just a couple of minutes!
Throughout the year there are Keeper Chats in the afternoon that usually include an enrichment like these. Check out our calendar by day to see what's happen when you come to the Zoo!
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